Patiala , Nov 8 : With green crackers the new norm on Diwali this year to mitigate air and noise pollution, Punjab took the lead in celebrating "Green Diwali".
The testimony to this fact was the Air Quality Data brought out by Punjab Pollution Control Board which showed deterioration in pollution levels.
Member Secretary of the Board, Karunesh Garg informed that as per the data of Continuous Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations established at Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Khanna, Mandi Gobindgarh and Patiala, the average air quality index of Punjab this year was 234 as compared to 328 in 2017, indicating a very encouraging decrease of 29 per cent in Air Quality Index. ''This points to better quality of air this year than previous years,'' he said.
Chairman of the Board, Prof. S.S. Marwaha stated that the low pollution levels are attributable to sustained awareness campaigns against bursting of chemical crackers launched by government and non-governmental organisations which have started showing results now.
He said last year average PM 10 was 430µgm/m 3 and PM 2.5 was 226µgm/m 3 whereas this year these figures are 277µgm/m 3 and 126µgm/m 3 respectively.
"There was 36 per cent and 44 per cent reduction in PM 10 and PM 2.5 levels respectively as compared to previous year which is a very encouraging trend," he mentioned.
He credited the school & college students for the endeavour who refrained from cracker bursting.
Prof. Marwah thanked the people for obeying the Supreme Court directions and painting Punjab "Green " this Diwali. (UNI)